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Three Things to Help You Manage Your Irritable Bowel Syndrome

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Managing the painful and lasting symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, is important. Fortunately, there are a number of small things you can do to avoid a flare-up. If you've been recently diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome, here are a few of the things you want to remember that can help keep you comfortable.

Handle Stress

Stress is a leading factor for IBS discomfort because it causes your muscles to tense up and tighten, including those in the stomach. For those diagnosed with IBS, stress is thought to increase the level of sensation and motility of the colon, potentially causing irritation. Since you can't exactly eliminate stress from your personal and professional life, knowing how to work through it is helpful.

Practicing deep breathing exercises is one option. To perform this step, avoid breathing from your chest. Instead, breathe from the diaphragm for several moments. This method of deep breathing relaxes the muscles in your stomach and reduces your risk.

Drink Sensibly

Make sure you are making smart choices when it comes to your drink selections. Ideally, the majority of your fluid intake should derive from water. Water won't just help ward off constipation and discomfort, but in the event you do fall prey to a flare-up, it can also help minimize the length of the flare-up and the intensity of its symptoms. Try to minimize your intake of highly caffeinated beverages like soda and coffee significantly.

Caffeine can over stimulate the bowels, which can irritate your gastrointestinal tract and increase your risk of a flare-up. If you're getting bored with water, consider peppermint tea, as it naturally has a number of qualities that can be soothing to your stomach and intestinal tract.

Eat With Your Stomach In Mind

There are a number of foods that will only irritate your IBS. Leading culprits include dairy products, sugar-free sweeteners, like sorbitol, and chocolate. There are also some healthy food options you might want to avoid, including cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower. For people with IBS, the body can have a more difficult time digesting these foods which can lead to the discomfort.

It's important to note that trigger foods can vary from person to person, your healthcare provider will be able to help you pinpoint which foods serve as irritants for you.

Living with and managing your IBS can be easy, if you know what to do. Make sure you are taking measures to keep your condition in check.